Ein Mitarbeiter von zeb hält einen Laptop unter dem Arm. Im Hintergrund befindet sich eine Tafel.

The benefits of a consultancy, but (almost) without traveling: zeb.research

Release date: 5 November 2023

You read a job ad and the buzzwords used in the job description don't really mean much to you? It was just the same for me when I started my internship in zeb's Embedded Research last year – consulting-related work, developing models for clients, preparing studies. I could not imagine so much under this description before I started. If you have the same issues, then this piece is for you. My name is Gabriel and I have been a consultant in Embedded Research since 2023.

Now I have the pleasure of introducing you to the range of tasks available in Embedded Research and the differences to consulting at the client interface. Before joining the company as a permanent employee, I had already supported the department as an intern and as a student assistant. So there are probably few people who know more about making the decision to start a career in Embedded Research.

How we organize ourselves

Our Research department is divided into Desk Research (DR) and Embedded Research (ER). Desk Research is the first point of contact for inquiries of all kinds – be it about economic data or information on financial service providers (FSPs), capital market data or information on entire banking markets. The DR colleagues have access to all the data in the world that we need as a consultancy. They also coordinate knowledge management within zeb as well as various publications that can be found on the BankingHub, for example. In addition to research activities and maintaining internal databases, they provide the entire company with data and the latest news from the financial services industry. DR's information specialists also support projects within the entire zeb spectrum with their expertise. 

Just like zeb as a whole, Embedded Research is organized according to our client structure and thus divided into the areas of regional banks, large banks and insurance companies. The geographical focus of the regional banks is on the DACH region: Germany, Austria and Switzerland. By contrast, when it comes to large banks and insurance companies, we operate all over Europe, like the company as a whole.

What we do in Embedded Research

The work we do in ER consists of a mixture of research and consulting. So that’s what I do, too. Tasks range from client projects and content-based collaboration in Practice Groups to the preparation of various zeb studies and publications. A strong focus is on the production of client-specific models. The wallet models are one example. These models provide our clients with information about the earnings potential of banks in the retail and corporate banking segments. The wallets can then be summarized according to products, segments and regions. This helps the banks to assess which areas still offer potential to be exploited.

For our tasks in ER we are trained in methodology, analyses as well as the relevant applications. Not only content, but also its comprehensible presentation is essential for us in ER. In combination with the accumulated know-how, we are trained to become real experts in this regard. We contribute our knowledge across all of zeb in the Practice Groups (PG). The PGs deal with individual focus topics relevant to our clients and are extremely important for the organization of client projects. Through our role in the PGs, we are ideally connected regarding our topics at zeb.

Where we differ from consulting at the client interface

In contrast to client consulting, our focus in Embedded Research is on analytical tasks. Typically, we supply data-based project components, and in some topic areas we can also support the entire project from within Embedded Research. As we don't tend to work on client premises much, we have less client contact and fewer days of travel. The intensity of direct client contact also depends on your personal preference. In ER, a highly individual career path is possible – depending on what type of person you are, you can go more in the direction of topic development or traditional consulting and set your own priorities. Topic development and project work are of equal value in our department, which is why we look for all kinds of profiles.

Why I chose Embedded Research

When I talked to my supervisor at the end of my internship about my further prospects at zeb, both ER and pure consulting were options for me. The decisive factor for joining Embedded Research was the good integration into the team. From the very beginning, I felt really welcome and supported, both professionally and personally. Also, I appreciate being able to remain actively involved in my sports club and spending the night in my own bed. That’s why Embedded Research was the right choice for me. 

If you recognize yourself in my profile, feel free to get in touch! We are always interested in meeting new potential colleagues. You can reach me at gabriel.schiekiera@zeb.de. 

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